Dowie Doole has their cellar door combined with Gemtree Wines in one of McLaren Vale‘s historic landmarks – the Salopian Inn. The Salopian Inn has been famous for it’s high quality food using regional Fleurieu produce. Under new management this historical McLaren Vale landmark now is not only the home to a quality regional produce dining experience, there is a wine list sourced by a Master of Wine, the home for Vale Ale (a new beer branded around McLaren Vale) plus the combined cellar door.
Check out the Lonely Grape cellar door map for the location of this cellar door.
2009 Second Nature Sauvingnon Blanc ($A18)
This wine was unusual for it’s restrained aromas unlike the norm for this variety. When you drink it there is the usual cut grass and the ripe passionfruit that is typical for the riper fruit sourced from McLaren Vale. It is not for me but I can see the wine being a big seller so why not!
2008 Tintookie Chenin Blanc ($A30)
Dowie Doole is known for this variety and is up there with Coriole as McLaren Vale’s quality producer of wine from this often frowned upon variety. The aromas were restrained – almost like the wine is moving from a fruit based phase to a more mature style. Thus I was looking forward to drinking this wine. The flavors were like drinking essence of Nashi pear with a lingering acid length. There is plenty and body here to still have a long life. The wine did not disappoint – it does show what Chenin Blanc can do.
2009 Merlot ($A22)
Here is the typical Merlot mulberries here in abundance with some mild influences of cedary oak. There is 10% Cabernet Sauvignon here that gives the wine some extra backbone that I suspect the wine would not have had without it. The softness here will appeal to many people, but me ……..
2009 Garnacha & Tempranillo ($A25)
I was looking forward to this wine as the boys from Qwoff spoke of it so highly – by the way Garnacha is Grenache and a very different G & T indeed.
The red fruits of the 65% Grenache really shows through on the nose and the 35% Tempranillo’s earthyness is the dominant flavors. As should be the case with Grenache based wines the tannins are soft but still structured. I have not had this blend before and I hope this is not the last time. Roll out a wood fired oven backed pizza.
Sweet black fruits here in both aromas and flavors with just a little oak. Maybe the product of a very difficult vintage but the sweet fruit character was not in line with what I would look for in a red wine, so this one is not for me.
2007 Cabernet Sauvignon ($A22)
Minimal aromas were followed by an interesting black cherry flavor that I was not expecting from a Cabernet Sauvignon. The rest of the flavors were typical of Cabernet – blackcurrent and dusty oak integration with a nice length. This is a nice Cabernet at the price point and would go well with a Rogan Josh.
2008 Shiraz ($A25)
All the elements of a McLaren Vale Shiraz are here – plums plus the spices of pepper, cardamon. There is a slightly bitter finish – maybe indicating high alcohol. Again something did not seem right with the overall potential enjoyment of this wine – the elements are there but the whole does not do justice to what the variety can do in McLaren Vale.
2008 California Road Shiraz ($A35)
Hold the fort – this single vineyard wine is such a large jump in quality and after the previous wine, my faith is restored! The aromas were plums, plums and more plums with that hint of dusty oak. Flavors were just like “essence of McLaren Vale Shiraz in a glass”. Plums again with vanilla characters that move apart for the dusty tannins to make their entrance. There is length here and not just the tannins – the fruit just seems to go on and on for miles. This was definately the best wine I tried from this stable and it is worth every cent. A high quality steak with a porchini mushroom sauce would be a spectacular combination.
2006 Reserve Shiraz
N/V Moxie Sparkling Red
2006 Sticky Bits Botytris Semillon